I’m Queen of the crazy train and I’m okay with that. I’m over 20 and under 50. I like to have things in a particular way. I hate dishes piled up on the counter. Can’t stand drinking the last bit of a drink, and always need a new glass when getting another. I have to sleep on my left shoulder (always) and often sleep with my head at the foot of the bed. Don’t know why.
I’ve been a hostile passenger of the crazy train for the past 20 years. That’s how long ago a doctor finally diagnosed me with Bipolar Disorder. Or what I like to call Straight Jacket Syndrome. And for those of you who think bipolar disorder is not a mental illness — you’d be wrong. I’m not someone who just suffers from depression on an occasional basis. Being Queen of the crazy train has its ups and downs, and it’s been a very long ride.
Now before you run away screaming from this post. It’s okay, I don’t blame you. Talking about mental illness is about as much fun as teaching your kids about sex. There is a huge stigma attached to mental illness in our society. I mean, who wants to be friends with someone who has the crazies, right?
Did you know that over 100,000 people around this circle we live on suffer from some form of mental instability? Some more than others. There is no shame in having a mental illness. In fact, everyone from the lady who bags your groceries to movie stars has suffered some form of anxiety or depression at least once in their life. Some of us just deal with it on a more regular basis.
Aside from Bipolar Disorder and Anxiety Disorder, I also have something called BPD or Borderline Personality Disorder. And no I’m not talking about having multiple personalities. Like one telling me to kill a cat while the other says to bake a cake. BPD stems from childhood trauma.
Having Borderline Personality Disorder is like walking on a tightrope that isn’t quite stable enough, throwing your balance off. It leaves you scared and defensive. Most people who suffer from BPD find everything in their lives unstable. Their relationships, moods, thinking, and behavior. It’s a frightening and horrible way to live your life, and that’s how I grew up.
BPD is treatable, though at one time doctors had no idea what it was. I wasn’t diagnosed until I was almost 32 years old with BPD, and so I had already learned ways to cope with my emotions, reactions and to change my thinking habits. But growing up, the symptoms made sense. In fact, my entire childhood could be put into a nice little box of symptoms I had suffered from. Here are the signs of Borderline Personality Disorder.
So why do I call myself Queen of the Crazy Train?
All my life I felt like something was wrong with me. I didn’t fit in. I overreacted to situations. I got emotional too fast. I cried a lot when there was no reason for me to cry (still do this btw) and I had no idea as a child there were reasons for this behavior. It wasn’t that I was a bad person or a fucked up person. I had a mental illness. Often times depression, anxiety and things like BPD go hand in hand.
I call myself the Queen of the Crazy Train because I’m well versed in dealing with my bipolar disorder, and have often helped others get through it. Taking medication for me helps keep me level. It doesn’t take away my mental illness, and my emotions are still mine. Up and down. Left and right. The key for me is that I can recognize what my triggers are, how to cope with them, and mostly to be in control of my reactions to those things that upset me. But I’ve also had 40 years practice at this.
The best thing you can do if someone you love has Borderline Personality Disorder is to learn as much about it as you can so that you can understand them. Learn what makes them tick. Understand what is in their control and what isn’t. Stop making excuses and stop thinking it’s something they can just turn on and off because they can’t!
The key to loving someone is to love all of them, the good, bad and the ugly.
Thanks for reading! ♥